DETROIT (CBS DETROIT) – The National Guard is working with local officials to reinforce dams straining to hold back flood waters in South Carolina, where at least 15 people have died from a massive rainstorm.

WWJ’s Sandra McNeill reports that a delegation from the Michigan Red Cross is headed south to help out.

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Michigan is sending 18 local Red Cross workers to the area to aid in the relief effort says Red Cross spokesperson Ian Dire.

“We are always looking beyond the key factors of food, clothing and shelter. At this point, when people are displaced and can’t get home we provide them with a safe place to sleep and certainly meals and a way to connect with their family members that may be outside that affected area,” said Dire.

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Although the rain has stopped the work to provide basic needs is just beginning.

“I’ve been doing this a while and I’ve been to my share of floods,” said Dire, “the difference between this and a river flood; usually a river floods – the water finds a place to go … but with rainfall you can have a lot of pooling – where the water just has no place to go and sits there for a while.”

“We’ll use faith-based partners and their facilities – we’ll use schools if at all possible – gymnasiums that sort of thing,” he said.

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This is one of their larger out-of-state relief efforts said Dire. The Red Cross will be helping with disaster and mental health services.